Regional overview

Hood Canal Bridge in Washington state

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Hood Canal: Key takeaways

1Summer chum abundance is approaching recovery goals in both the Hood Canal and Straits of Juan de Fuca populations.

2Summer chum spawn in the lower 1 or 2 miles of their home rivers, making river estuaries important nurseries for young fish and the focus of restoration efforts in this region. Read more in our story map.

3Revised fishing regulations, habitat restoration, and ocean conditions that support salmon survival have increased summer chum salmon numbers. Loss of habitat from population growth and development remains the biggest threat.

Visit the Regional Recovery Organization’s Web site:

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2016 progress and challenges


  • Fishing regulation reforms
  • Short-term hatchery supplementation and reintroduction of previously extinct salmon runs
  • Major estuary restoration efforts throughout Hood Canal
  • Removal of more than 30 barriers to fish migration, which opened nearly 100 miles of habitat to salmon since 1999
  • Conservation of more than 2,100 acres of habitat since 1999
  • Restoration or protection of more than 250 miles of streams since 1999


  • Degraded habitat caused by population growth and development (see the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission’s 2016 State of Our Watersheds report for details about habitat problems in Hood Canal)
  • Water in streams that is poor quality, too warm, too muddy, or limited in the amount of stream flow
  • Impacts from the Hood Canal Floating Bridge
  • Degraded floodplain and river channel structure
  • Climate change is anticipated to be a significant threat in the future

About our region

Hood Canal is a glacier-carved fjord more than 60 miles long, which forms the westernmost edge of Puget Sound. The canal is home to a unique species of salmon called Hood Canal summer chum salmon. They are the first fish to return each year and have been documented in most of the major rivers that drain to Hood Canal.

Hood Canal summer chum are one of four species of salmon and trout in Hood Canal listed as threatened under the federal Endangered Species Act. The Hood Canal Coordinating Council’s summer chum salmon recovery plan was adopted by the federal government in 2007. The 10-year, $252 million plan focuses on fixing the places salmon live so that more survive the trip to and from the ocean and make it home to spawn.

Salmon recovery stories

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Hood Canal salmon recovery region of Washington state